History in a hill-top hotel
Hotel Fort Canning resonates with rich historic and botanic credentials; its elevated parkland position having been a palatial resort for Majapahit Kings, traders and imperialists. Today, the site sits at the heart of the city; situated between Orchard Road, Clarke Quay and the Central Business District.
This exclusive setting and unique history inspired the conversion of the building from a sleepy club house into a unique archaeological hotel. Granted conservation status in 2005; the building's façade's had to be preserved and restored. This led to investigative works and one major discovery; the ‘porte-cochere', a previously enclosed lobby that is now expressed as a grand drop-off for the hotel. The success of the restoration process encouraged the designers to continue in the same vein throughout the project, returning all of the interiors to their original splendour. Columns were stripped of their non period cladding and repaired, as were the original beams. Yet, the most miraculous restorations took place on the grand stairs, analogous to a tree canopy; now look as they would have done 100 years ago. In addition to the restoration works four glass-topped archaeological pits, lauded by the Wall Street Journal, are featured in the hotel lobby floor with 14th & 19th century artefacts unearthed by Dr. John Miksic, archaeologist and associate professor at NUS.
The room interiors are tastefully decorated in a warm colour palette and accented with champagne gold, and designer furniture from Poltrona Frau. The glass framed verandas in the premium suites enclose a cosy sitting area as a modern re-interpretation of the serambi. This space offers guests an elegantly framed view of the city or a calming sea of lush greenery. Facing the serambi is the bathroom, with its glass framed conservation doors which separate it from the main living space whilst also reinstating the gentility of the room's colonial past. In combination with the high ceilings and large windows of Hotel Fort Canning, careful space planning and luxurious yet minimal decoration allow the rooms to feel large and airy despite the strict confines of its colonial footprint.